How to love the Trinity, its vagueness, non-sense, God talking to God on the cross? Theological geometry, stumper of metaphor, God humbled to a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Only when I heard that voice singing Our songs shall rise to thee did I feel a welling of love that, at best, visits me occasionally in prayer, indwelling and expanding within me. Yes, God, the darkness hideth thee. Too often as I sit in the pews, nothing happens. Or worse, Nothing happens, doubt a scrim over every word I pray, a tepid mutter of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But that hymn’s falsetto, surrender, the not- knowingness of it—Lord, though I can not see, I did hear a shimmer, some wick in me caught fire, and fear, that liar, left me, momentarily, free in the Holy, music, the blessed Trinity.
The Gospel of John addresses a community facing trouble because of its faith in Jesus. Its original readers needed to hear a message of affirmation. No wonder Jesus says "I will not leave you orphaned" and promises the disciples peace.
When we are overwhelmed by our daily struggles, when we get weary because of the dehumanization that results from hatred and greed, Proverbs 8 and Psalm 8 remind us how God conceives of us as human beings crowned with glory and honor.
Scripture doesn't just shape the life of the community of faith. It also has a powerful effect on the lives of those who maintain distance from traditional religion, even those who explicitly deny religious faith.